Household Food Insecurity in Canada, 2014

Household food insecurity, inadequate or insecure access to food because of financial constraints, is a significant social and health problem in Canada. Not all provinces and territories chose to measure food insecurity in 2014 but among those that did, the problem appears to have remained persistently high. When the results for the participating jurisdictions - Alberta, Saskatchewan, Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, the Northwest Territories, and Nunavut – are considered together, 12.0% of households experienced some level of food insecurity during the previous 12 months in 2014. This represents 1.3 million households, or 3.2 million individuals, including nearly 1 million children under the age of 18. More than 1 in 6 children under the age of 18 lived in households that experienced food insecurity.

Food insecurity was most prevalent in Canada’s North (especially Nunavut) and the Maritimes in 2014. In Nunavut and the Northwest Territories, the prevalence rose to the highest levels observed since monitoring began in 2005, 46.8% and 24.1% respectively. While food insecurity appeared to drop in the provinces, no changes in prevalence were large enough to be statistically significant.

The report has been prepared by PROOF, a Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR)- funded research program initiated to identify effective policy interventions to address household food insecurity. It is the fourth in a series of annual reports on food insecurity in Canada.

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